The Chicago Fire Reserves (1-0-0, 3 pts.) opened their 2006 Reserve Division season with a 1-0 victory over the Los Angeles Galaxy Reserves (0-1-0, 0 pts.) on Sunday morning at The Home Depot Center on the Campus of California State University, Dominguez Hills. Fire forward Floyd Franks scored the lone goal of the match in the 65th minute to earn Chicago the victory.
In the first half, the Galaxy and Fire traded possession back and forth testing each other's defense, but both sides were unable to break through despite several dangerous opportunities. Fire forwards Nate Jaqua and Calen Carr nearly combined on a few chances but were stopped by the Galaxy's defense. The Galaxy's best chance came from newcomer Cornell Glen, who used a burst of speed to beat his man on the dribble up the left wing only to see his shot go just wide of the far post. Before the end of the half, tempers flared as Jaqua made a tough tackle on Los Angeles' Kyle Veris. Upset with the tackle, Veris confronted Jaqua and brief pushing match ensued before the referee issued each player a caution.
Franks scored the game-winner in 65th minute by finishing off a skillfully crafted build up from Calen Carr, who beat the Galaxy's Marc Burch and then Nathan Sturgis at the end line. Carr's cross found an open Franks in the six-yard box, where he headed home the goal for the 1-0 lead.
Once again, tempers would rise between the two clubs in the game's final five minutes. Another pushing match ensued in the 85th minute after a hard tackle from the Fire, this time by defender Jack Stewart, resulted in a confrontation with the Galaxy's Memo Gonzalez, with double cautions again being issued as a result. Los Angeles was unable to equalize on a few chances in the last half hour, resulting in the visitors gaining the full three points. Fire Reserves goalkeepers Matt Pickens and David Mahoney played the first and second halves, respectively, to earn the clean sheet for Chicago.
CHI - Floyd Franks 1 (Calen Carr 1) 65
Chicago Fire Reserves (4-3-3) - Matt Pickens (David Mahoney 46), Leonard Griffin (Vardan Adzemian 87), Jack Stewart, Jeff Curtin, Dasan Robinson, John Thorrington (Terry Alvino 66), Brian Plotkin, Jared Montz, Calen Carr, Nate Jaqua (Jordan Russilillo 60), Floyd Franks.
SUBS NOT USED: None
Los Angeles Reserves (4-4-2) - Steve Cronin, Kyle Veris, Troy Roberts, Brian Dunseth (Memo Gonzalez 86), Nathan Sturgis, Ned Grabavoy, Marcelo Saragosa, Richard Mupfudze (Daniel Paladini 46), Marc Burch, Cornell Glen (Quavas Kirk 81), Joseph Ngwenya (Mike Enfield 46).
SUBS NOT USED: Steve Gonzalez, Justin Dunst.
CHI - Leonard Griffin (caution) 14
CHI - John Thorrington (caution) 24
LA - Steve Cronin (caution) 27
CHI - Nate Jaqua (caution) 32
LA - Kyle Veris (caution) 32
CHI - Jack Stewart (caution) 85
LA - Memo Gonzalez (caution) 85
Referee: Josef Batko
Referee's Assistants: Steve Elliott, Ali Hacock
4th Official: Ramon Hernandez
Weather: Partly Cloudy, 63 degrees